Students of the Month – July 2016
Skid Row Learning Center
– Dayeli, 4th Grade. Once in a blue moon, you come across a student who embraces learning with her whole soul. June’s Student of the Month, Dayeli, is one such special occurrence. Her stint at School On Wheels appeared inauspicious since she came into the learning center with virtually zero English ability. Unperturbed, Mr. Ryan and I used our bilingual skill set and Duolingo to teach her English and math. She soaked up both subjects like a sponge with the most infectious enthusiasm I’ve ever seen. Accordingly, I feel delighted to share my experience of Dayeli with anyone willing to hear about this radiant, diligent girl.
Brian Lopez, Skid Row Learning Center Instructor
Region 1 – East LA
– Diego, 2nd Grade. When I first met Diego, we had a one on one reading and Arts and Crafts session. Just five minutes into our first session, he decided he was done and wanted to leave. For the next week I researched day in and day out how to keep him engaged. Every week I applied a new technique; just a few weeks ago, he stayed involved through our entire session for the first time. We built windmills out of paper and pencils. He was so excited that he built two!
Wendy Rodriguez, Tutor
Region 3 – Westside
– Derryon, 1st Grade. Derryon is 6 years old and has just finished kindergarden. He is such a pleasure to work with! In his own words: “I am nice and cool and awesome! I work hard. I like being people’s friend.” He is also an amazing dancer and singer! These past months we worked on reading and numbers. As a reward for Derryon being such a good student, we’ve also gone on a field trip to watch “Finding Dory” with his older sister Dakota and her tutor Tom. It has been nothing but a joy tutoring Derryon, and I’m so happy to see him getting more curious about learning with each session!
Zhanna Guzhavina, Tutor
Region 5 – Hollywood, Silverlake, Pasadena
– Tyler, 6th Grade. Tyler is very bright, perceptive, and quick to get a concept when it is explained well. He is a perfect example of a student with a lot of ability who sometimes needs a little extra help staying motivated. Sometimes Tyler wasn’t so into tutoring, but we try to talk his feelings through and see what we can do to make the sessions work better. I have found him to be a delight: he is by turns hilarious, cool, sensitive and insightful. He has many interests outside of school, and our main progress has been in getting him to turn more of that focus on his schoolwork. His reading and writing seem to have improved a lot since we first started working together, which has been nice to see.
Patrick Anderson, Tutor
Region 7 – San Fernando Valley
– Camryn, 8th Grade . Camryn is such a kind, loving, giving, bubbly and charismatic spirit. She can light up any room she walks into and start conversations with just about anyone. The day we first met, Camryn told me how much she loves animals and plans to be a vet after she finishes college. Camryn also loves sports! She is definitely an athlete but volleyball is her favorite sport. One of my favorite things about Camryn is her resilience. No matter what, Camryn will always try her best and she never gives up. Her toughness is something I look up to. I could not ask for a better student and I am truly blessed to be a part of her life and to have her in mine.
Darien Onori, Tutor
– Tyler, 5th Grade. What I realized about Tyler is something I see often in students who are fidgety and seem distracted in my own classroom: he is so smart that he probably found a lot of the work boring! I figured that rewarding Tyler with his beloved Captain Underpants was a way to motivate him to get through the boring but necessary homework and I saw a lot of improvement.I was touched to hear that he had read the entire Captain Underpants book that same night and then lent it to a friend. ) We did some timed reading passages in a workbook. Tyler liked setting the timer and trying to break his previous records. He is SUCH a fast yet careful reader. Tyler is also a talented artist. With some leftover time during an in-person session, I asked him to draw me something, and he obliged with the villain from Captain Underpants (see photo).
Finally, while going through Tyler’s backpack for the end-of-year clean-out, we came across a perfect attendance award. That is no easy feat for anyone, but it’s especially remarkable for a student in his situation. Tyler brings so much creativity, sensitivity and energy to everything he does and I feel lucky to get to know him better and to work with him every week. I could see him having his own popular comic strip one day!
Elizabeth Vitanza, Online Tutor